What makes a great UI?

If you have ever found yourself on a particular website being unable to understand what they’re offering, or faced inconvenience navigating its pages, chances are that you would simply close the window and opt for another website. Such a thing would be more than likely if the website didn’t possess a robust User Interface Design.

At the end of the day, for a business that thrives on internet traffic, it needs to make sure that the user interface design for their website is unrivalled and effortless to handle. User Interface (UI) Design is the link between users and the frontend website. UI Design is all about structure, user manipulation, and communication. It single-handedly controls how a website sets up and functions on the screen when visited by the target audience.

UI design can have a significant impact with just the smallest of adjustments. For instance, even the shape of a tiny button on-screen could determine whether or not someone is able to accomplish a trivial task. People have certain instincts based on visual details that play into how they interact with a website and developers need to consider these patterns very carefully while incorporating them in the web design. In addition to essential designing aspects like colour schemes and overall aesthetic appeal, the website as a whole should not be riddled with complexities that make it difficult to interact with.

User interface design is defined by its five fundamental elements- Language, colour, imagery, typography, and icons.

  • The mood of a website can be aptly set using proper words and naming or branding the website apropos. Proper colours are essential to define moods on a website and to exemplify navigation appropriately.

  • Imagery can be used in a multitude of ways to make a website attractive as well as informative. Images can be used primarily as content, in both contained and immersive ways. Imagery can also help to set a tone or ambience that the audience can relate to, in addition to being an excellent method for navigation.

  • Typography comes to the rescue when it becomes difficult to depict certain representations. Language is very economical in terms of its meaning and has a great deal of flexibility in terms of how it works that imagery cannot compete with. It is therefore a necessity to have a typographic visual brand that helps your product stand out.

  • Last but not the least, Icons, which are used as interfaces or as branding in website designs.

Jakob Nielsen, a renowned web usability consultant and partner in the Nielsen Norman Group, and Rolf Molich, another prominent usability expert, established a list of ten user interface design guidelines in the 1990s, including Visibility of system status, Match between system and the real world, User control and freedom, Consistency and standards, Error prevention, Recognition rather than recall, Flexibility and efficiency of use, Aesthetic and minimalist design, Help users recognize, diagnose and recover from errors, and Help and documentation.

An elegant User Interface is, hence, extremely crucial because it can turn potential visitors to buyers as it facilitates smooth interactions between the user and your website or web application.

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